Varsity Zone

March 10, 2014

Three things to watch for at the Kansas state basketball tournament

20 Kansas City area teams are going to state, here are some of the biggest story lines

Varsity Zone

The best source for high school sports in the Kansas City area

Huskies and Saints as repeat champions

On the boys side, the defending Class 5A state champions from Shawnee Mission South lost in the first round of the 6A sub-state, but 6A champion Blue Valley Northwest is still going strong.

The Huskies, who returned all five starters from last season, enter the state tournament as the top seed with a 20-2 record and will face Wichita North, 12-10, at 3 p.m. on Thursday. The team’s two losses came against Apple Valley and Blue Valley North which is the No. 6 seed at 18-4.

On the girls side, defending 5A state champion St. Thomas Aquinas enters the tournament as a No. 4 seed with Leavenworth taking the top spot. Aquinas is 20-2 with losses to Rock Bridge and Blue Valley North, but has won 11 straight games. Aquinas will face Kapaun Mount Carmel, 20-2, at 4:45 p.m. on Thursday at the Topeka Expocentre.

Lansing’s quest for perfection

The Lansing boys basketball team has stayed perfect so far which earned the Lions the top seed in the 5A state tournament. Lansing, 22-0, will start with a 3 p.m. matchup with Aquinas, 11-11, on Wednesday at Koch Arena in Wichita.

Including Lansing, the 5A bracket featured four teams with one or no losses. Hays comes in as the second seed with a 22-0 record, Highland Park is third at 21-1 and Goddard Eisenhower is fourth with a 21-1 ledger.

Olathe South’s consistency

The Falcons are going to the state tournament for the 10th straight season and looking for the program’s first title since 2010.

Olathe South, 20-2, is the No. 3 seed in the 6A girls bracket behind Manhattan and Wichita which each have 21-1 records. The Falcons lost in the quarterfinals last season, but lost just two seniors from that team. Olathe South’s two losses this season came against Marshfield and Leavenworth which is the top seeded team in 5A.

Olathe South will face Sunflower League foe Shawnee Mission Northwest at 8:15 p.m. on Wednesday at Koch Arena in Wichita.

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